Mortgage Modification Automotive Industry Distress Among Topics to be Discussed at ABIs 2009 Central States Bankruptcy Workshop

Mortgage Modification Automotive Industry Distress Among Topics to be Discussed at ABIs 2009 Central States Bankruptcy Workshop

Contact: John Hartgen
              (703) 739-0800
jhartg[email protected]



March 12, 2009, Alexandria, Va. —The American Bankruptcy Institute’s (ABI) 16th Annual Central States Bankruptcy Workshop, featuring 24 bankruptcy judges from the Sixth and Seventh Circuits, will take place June 11-14 at Michigan’s Grand Traverse Resort and Spa on Lake Michigan. More than 400 professionals are expected to attend this year’s workshop. Attendees have the opportunity to earn up to 9.0 hours of CLE credit, including 1.25 hours of ethics. Doug Lutz of Frost Brown Todd, LLC (Cincinnati) is the program chair and Bankruptcy Judge Marci B. McIvor (E.D. Mich.; Detroit) is the judicial chair. Bankruptcy Judge John H. Squires (N.D. Ill; Chicago) is the judicial advisory board chair.

Returning to this year’s Workshop are a series of six unique “Judicial Debates,” where judges change roles and act as advocates.

The following propositions will be debated this year at the first round of “Judicial Debates,” moderated bytheprogram’s Advisory Board Chair Anne B. Miller of Novare, Inc. (Crystal Lake, Ill.):

  • Bankruptcy Judges Steven W. Rhodes (E.D. Mich.; Detroit) and Mary Ann Whipple (N.D. Ohio; Toledo) will debate “11 U.S.C. §547 should be repealed.”
  • “Bankruptcy judges should have authority to modify residential mortgages” will be debated by Bankruptcy Judges Susan V. Kelley (D. Wis.; Milwaukee) and Eugene R. Wedoff (N.D. Ill.; Chicago).
  • “A chapter 11 case that has been filed solely for the benefit of the secured creditor must be dismissed” will be debated by Bankruptcy Judges J. Philip Klingeberger (N.D. Ind; Hammond) and Robert D. Martin (W.D. Wis.; Madison).

The second round of “Judicial Debates, moderated by Doug Lutz of Frost Brown Todd, LLC (Cincinnati), will feature:”

  • Debating “The means test controls the dividend to unsecured creditors in a chapter 13 bankruptcy case” will be Bankruptcy Judges Arthur I. Harris (N.D. Ohio; Cleveland) and Pamela Pepper (E.D. Wis.; Milwaukee).
  • Bankruptcy Judges John E. Hoffman, Jr. (S.D. Ohio; Columbus) and Guy R. Humphrey (S.D. Ohio; Dayton) will debate “Bankruptcy judges have the authority to compel a carve-out for payment of administrative professional fees.”
  • The “Success in chapter 13 cases should be measured by whether the debtor obtains a discharge” debate will feature Bankruptcy Judges Margaret Dee McGarity (E.D. Wis.; Milwaukee) and Daniel S. Opperman (E.D. Mich.; Bay City).

Concurrent sessions at this year’s Workshop include:

“How to Avoid Problems with the Trustee: Consumer Best Practices,” will feature moderator Brian J. Small of Thav, Gross, Steinway & Bennett, PC (Bingham Farms, Mich.) with panelists Bankruptcy Judge Bruce W. Black (N.D. Ill.; Chicago) and Paul G. Swanson of Steinhilber, Swanson, Mares, Marone & McDermott (Oshkosh, Wis.).

The “Tell It to the Bankruptcy Judge? Limitations on Bankruptcy Court Jurisdiction” session, moderated by Kathryn Pamenter of Goldberg Kohn Bell Black Rosenbloom & Moritz, Ltd. (Chicago), will feature panelists Michael P. O'Neil of Taft Stettinius & Hollister LLP (Indianapolis), Bankruptcy Judge John H. Squires (N.D. Ill; Chicago) and Scott A. Wolfson of Bush Seyferth & Paige PLLC (Troy, Mich.).

Karen E. Evangelista of Karen E. Evangelista, PC (Auburn Hills, Mich.) will moderate the “Keep Your License: Ethical Issues for Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, Debtor and Creditor” session with panelists Eugene Crane of Crane, Heyman, Simon, Welch & Clar (Chicago), Karen R. Goodman of Shefsky & Froelich Ltd. (Chicago) and Bankruptcy Judge Walter Shapero (E.D. Mich.; Detroit).

The “So Much Information, So Little Time: Managing Consumer Cases in the Electronic Age” session will be moderated by James W. Boyd of Zimmerman, Kuhn, Darling, Boyd, Taylor and Quandt, PLC (Traverse City, Mich.) and feature panelists Joseph E. Cohen of Cohen & Krol (Chicago), Ryan B. Moran of Ryan B. Moran, PLLC (Royal Oak, Mich.) and Bankruptcy Judge Lawrence S. Walter (S.D. Ohio; Dayton).

Moderator Christopher J. Stroebel of von Briesen & Roper, SC (Madison, Wis.) will be joined by panelists Jamie Leigh Hadac of Foresite Realty Partners, LLC (Rosemont, Ill.), Bankruptcy Judge Pamela S. Hollis (N.D. Ill.; Chicago), Barry P. Lefkowitz of Virchow, Krause & Company, LLP (Southfield, Mich.) and Mark L. Radtke of Shaw Gussis Fishman Glantz Wolfson & Towbin LLC (Chicago) for the “Remember When That Real Estate Was Worth Something? Dealing with the Distressed Real Estate Market in Insolvency and Restructuring Proceedings” session.

Thomas A. Morrow of AlixPartners LLP (Southfield, Mich.) will moderate “The Never-ending Story: Recent Trends in Automotive Restructuring” session with panelists Kriss Andrews of BBK (Southfield, Mich.), Francis X. Buckley, Jr. of Thompson Coburn Fagel Haber (Chicago), Laura Marcero of Grant Thornton LLP (Southfield, Mich.) and Bankruptcy Judge Phillip J. Shefferly (E.D. Mich.; Detroit).

The “Chapter 13 Discharge Issues: How to Reach the Finish Line” session, moderated by Chapter 13 Trustee Thomas D. DeCarlo (Southfield, Mich.), will include panelists Albert Todd Almassian of Keller, Vincent & Almassian, PLC (Grand Rapids, Mich.), Richard Kerr Gustafson, II of Legal Helpers/Macey & Aleman (Chicago) and Bankruptcy Judge Mary Ann Whipple (N.D. Ohio; Toledo).

Moderator Gary Lynn Hostetler of Hostetler & Kowalik, PC (Indianapolis) will be joined by panelists Bankruptcy Judge A. Benjamin Goldgar (N.D. Ill.; Chicago), Richardo I. Kilpatrick of Kilpatrick & Associates, PC; (Auburn Hills, Mich.) and Daniel M. McDermott of the Office of the U.S. Trustee (Cleveland) for the “Consumer Practitioners: How’s Life under BAPCPA? An Update on Post-BAPCPA Consumer Case Law” session.

The “’Disclose, Disclose, Disclose!!!’” Ethics Issues in Business Cases” session will be moderated by Ronald L. Rose of Dykema Gossett PLLC (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.) with panelists Stephen M. Gross of McDonald Hopkins LLC (Bloomfield Hills, Mich.), Kimberly J. Robinson of Barack Ferrazzano Krschbaum & Nagelberg LLP (Chicago) and Bankruptcy Judge Thomas J. Tucker (E.D. Mich.; Detroit).

Matthew T. Gensburg of Greenberg Traurig, LLP (Chicago) will moderate the “Business Practitioners: Life under BAPCPA—The Impact of BAPCPA and Rule Changes in Chapter 11 Cases” session with panelists Susan M. Cook of Lambert, Leser, Isackson, Cook & Giunta, PC (Bay City, Mich.), Bankruptcy Judge James D. Gregg (W.D. Mich.; Grand Rapids) and Andrew R. Vara of the Office of the U.S. Trustee (Cleveland).

The “Breakfast with a Judge” roundtable discussion will feature Bankruptcy Judges Bruce W. Black (N.D. Ill; Chicago), Carol A. Doyle (N.D. Ill; Chicago), A. Benjamin Goldgar (N.D. Ill; Chicago),  James D. Gregg (W.D. Mich.; Grand Rapids),   Arthur I. Harris (N.D. Ohio; Cleveland), John E. Hoffman, Jr. (S.D. Ohio; Columbus), Pamela S. Hollis (N.D. Ill; Chicago), Guy R. Humphrey (S.D. Ohio; Dayton), Susan V. Kelley (E.D. Wis.; Milwaukee), Philip Klingeberger (N.D. Ind.; Hammond), Keith M. Lundin (Nashville), Robert D. Martin (W.D. Wis.; Madison), Margaret Dee McGarity (E.D. Wis.; Milwaukee), Marci McIvor (E.D. Mich.; Detroit), Daniel S. Opperman (E.D. Mich.; Bay City), Pamela Pepper (E.D. Wis.; Milwaukee), Steven W. Rhodes (E.D. Mich.; Detroit), Walter Shapero (E.D. Mich.; Detroit), Phillip J. Shefferly (E.D. Mich.; Detroit), John H. Squires (N.D. Ill.; Chicago), Thomas J. Tucker (E.D. Mich.; Detroit), Lawrence S. Walter (S.D. Ohio; Dayton), Eugene R. Wedoff (N.D. Ill.; Chicago) and Mary Ann Whipple (N.D. Ohio; Toledo).

For more information about the Central States Bankruptcy Workshop, call ABI at (703) 739-0800 or visit


ABI is the largest multi-disciplinary, nonpartisan organization dedicated to research and education on matters related to insolvency. ABI was founded in 1982 to provide Congress and the public with unbiased analysis of bankruptcy issues. The ABI membership includes nearly 12,000 attorneys, accountants, bankers, judges, professors, lenders, turnaround specialists and other bankruptcy professionals, providing a forum for the exchange of ideas and information. For additional information on ABI, visit For additional conference information, visit